Keeping Our Students Safe in a Digital World
We may think of our kids' online, mobile and technological activities as the "digital life", but to them it's just life! In their world, being able to connect and communicate 24 hours, 7 days a week from just about any location is normal. Phones are not simply for phone calls anymore, but for listening to music, sending texts, filming videos, snapping and sharing photos, and accessing the Internet. Our kids are using computers and tablets to socialize, stream video and create movies and songs; and they can connect and communicate 24/7 from just about any location!
Why does cyber safety matter in the Pittsburgh Public School District?
At PPS, we want our students to make good decisions so they can take advantage of the powerful technology that fills their lives both at school and at home. But in order to make good choices, kids must know how the digital world works. The stakes are high because our kids' technological abilities can be greater than their maturity and judgment. Having unrestricted access to information and people can result in gaining a wealth of information and experiences. On the other hand, it can also mean accessing inappropriate content and exposure to risks such as:
What tips can parents use at home?
Please spend a few moments reviewing the resources below and most importantly, model positive digital behavior with your children or students as much as possible; set a good example. In addition, here are a few tips that parents can use at home:
• Keep the computer in a high-traffic area of your home.
• Establish limits for which online sites children may visit and for how long.
• Remember that Internet technology can be mobile, so be sure to monitor cell phones, gaming devices, laptops, etc.
• Surf the Internet with your children and let them show you what they like to do online.
• Know who is connecting with your children online and set rules for social networking, instant messaging, e-mailing, online gaming, using webcams, etc.
• Continually dialogue with your children about online safety.